I once ran into unconditional love. I use the words “ran into” because it was like smacking into a brick wall … a brick wall because the contrast was so startlingly different from what I had ever experienced. What I have also since discovered after years of experience, observation, study and research is that unconditional love is often so elusive for many other people too because of the world we live in … driven as it is by a philosophy in opposition to unconditional love … and instead more aligned with conditional love … just as our world is more aligned with Disrespect versus Respect.
The love, of course, came in the package of a man.
What made him different from anyone else who had been in my life? I now know, it was not so much him; it was me, because then and now, for the first time since being a child, I knew in my heart I would do anything for him … and because of the conditional love that filled my experience, I was afraid of what he would ask of me and what I would do for him if he asked.
Love I had known hurt … either physically, with smacks, punches, hair pulls, rape or with words of humiliation, blatant though mostly subtle, sarcastic and deep-cutting or from the isolation born of rejection. Then there were “the conditions” … do this, do that, look like this, dress like this, act like this, not that job, this job, not that hobby, this hobby, not that amount of money, but this amount, not friends with him/her, but with them …
I met this man when I was just discovering who I really was underneath all the conditions I had previously accepted. So many changes were happening as a result of my ongoing re-discovery … changes most people did not like because my changes changed their world and they did not want … no, were angry about such changes. That’s when I realized love that I knew was conditional … not only in what I received, but also in what I gave.
Smitten by the initial unconditional acceptance of me by this man … his liking of the differences in me that others were rejecting made me love him even more … and then terrified me.
Back and forth, I oscillated between love and fear, till I contributed to his own fear … pushing us further and further apart for years and years.
The taste of unconditional love then left a bitter taste in my mouth and instead of focusing on the love, I focused on the pain … till recently, when my heart, through my growing RESPECT LEVEL re-opened the door to unconditional love.
How? By first helping me to love myself unconditionally … mistakes, bad choices and even the cruelty I lashed out to others because of my own pain or that which they inflicted, consciously or not, and that I accepted and internalized. Now I find myself praying for those who hurt me know with their judgments, words and actions. I pray they will experience the unconditional love that comes from a higher RESPECT LEVEL and results in acceptance, forgiveness and peace.
I am so glad and grateful for the wall of love I ran into … the wall that stopped me cold and said, “Look at me. I am love. Real love.” Finally, after all these years, I can now look at that wall and agree, “Yes, me too. I am love … unconditionally, for I forgive, choosing peace and cherishing over all else … no matter how much others carelessly or consciously try to hurt me with their judgments, words or actions.”
Today, I hope will you consider what a higher RESPECT LEVEL has done for this once-very tortured soul and consider what it could do for you. Maybe my story will be the wall of unconditional love you need to run into today. I hope so. Your life will never be the same … in a good way.
Sincerely, with love,
Kaitlin A. Trepanier
All Rights Reserved
August 28, 2013
Connecting the Dots … with The RESPECT PRINCIPLE Developer, Author, Speaker and Playwright